AxoSim's acquisition of microBrain to transform neurological R&D

By Liza Laws

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images
© Getty Images

Related tags R&D Research and development acquisition Mergers and acquisitions neurological

A company’s goal of delivering human data faster to ‘transform neurological R&D’ has been boosted by the completion of an acquisition.

AxoSim Inc., is in the field of development and application of live biometric human drug discovery platforms for neurological diseases announced yesterday (October 24) the acquisition of microBrain-associated assets of Vyant Bio’s Stemonix subsidiary.

The acquisition includes the microBrain drug discovery platform, a 14,000 square foot R&D and manufacturing facility near Minneapolis, nine patents and associated intellectual property, and veteran scientists who helped develop the microBrain technology and are experts in its application.

Dubbed the company’s ‘Downriver’ location as it is linked by the Mississippi River, the New Orleans headquarters of AxoSim is now joined by colleagues and capabilities ‘Upriver’ in Minnesota.

Transforming neurological data

“Our goal of delivering human data faster to transform neurological R&D takes a major step forward with the addition of the microBrain platform, team and facilities,” said Lowry Curley, co-founder and chief executive officer of AxoSim.

“Neurological disorders cause enormous suffering and harm to patients, families, and society.

Unfortunately, new drug R&D for neurological diseases is among the slowest, most expensive, and least effective, reflecting their complexity and the lack of predictive animal models.

“Our advanced platforms empower scientists to generate functional, clinically relevant human data years earlier in the process, a potentially revolutionary change that we believe will accelerate the efficient development of new drugs for these devastating diseases with few current treatment options.”

Human induced pluripotent stem cells

The new microBrain technology will sit alongside AxoSim’s NerveSim and BrainSim platforms, which use human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) to develop live 3D models of the human brain and nerves, also known as organoids or live biomimetic models.

AxoSim will now be able to study whole nerve conduction to support drug discovery efforts in chronic pain, neurotoxicity, and peripheral neuropathy, while BrainSim includes key brain cell types for the study of myelination-related conditions such as multiple sclerosis. The addition of the microBrain technology, with its ability to chart electrical activity in the brain, supports research efforts in disorders such as epilepsy, Rett Syndrome, and Parkinson’s disease.

AxoSim says it is viewed as one of the leading biotechnology innovators in the New Orleans region and it benefits from broad community support. Among its early investors is Gayle Benson, founder of Benson Capital Partners

Groundbreaking advancements 

Benson said: “AxoSim's groundbreaking advancements in neuroscience have proven to be industry leading and remarkable. AxoSim’s dedication to innovation and their unwavering commitment to improving our understanding of the human brain are truly inspiring.

“Through their cutting-edge technology and acquisitions like this one, AxoSim is paving the way for transformative changes in medicine and our community. We are thrilled to have such an extraordinary company headquartered right in our backyard at the New Orleans BioInnovation Center.”

Thomas Hartung is a pioneer in the development of brain organoids and inventor of one of AxoSim’s core technologies.

Hartung added: “This acquisition brings together the knowledge and intellectual property of some of the most advanced brain organoid models with AxoSim’s broad experience in their commercialization and dissemination. Brain organoids are the future for drug development in brain disorders and the de-risking of drugs and chemicals in general.” 

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